202004.03
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Understanding Software License Agreements to Avoid BSA or SIIA Software Audits

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Recent trends indicate that software publishers are increasingly initiating direct software audits instead of outsourcing the auditing process to entities such as the BSA | The Software Alliance (“BSA”) or Software & Information Industry Association (“SIIA”). However, the BSA and SIIA continue to actively target companies of all sizes to determine whether the company is…

201910.01
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What is the BSA | The Software Alliance’s Definition of Software Piracy??

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“Software piracy” is a favorite catch-phrase used by the Business Software Alliance (BSA) and the software companies it represents.  Most people understand software piracy to involve the intentional copying and, in many cases, distribution of copyrighted software to third parties without permission of the copyright owner.  Understandably, the term has extremely negative connotations, and most businesses will…

201905.17
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Unpleasant Surprises in BSA | The Business Software Alliance and SIIA Software Audits

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  Another way in which publishers or auditing entities raise the amount in controversy in software audits is the attempt to assess separate “fines” for each allegedly infringing installation of a software product. Thus, a company reporting just ten undocumented installations of Office Professional 2007, with no other licensing shortfalls, may receive a settlement offer…

201905.15
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Tracking Down Proofs of Purchase for Software Licenses

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When a company receives a letter from BSA | The Software Alliance questioning the authenticity of software licensing status and demanding an in-house audit, it is very important to have proofs of purchase for the licenses in question. Absent sufficient proof of purchase, the BSA will assume that the associated software installations are unlicensed and…

201905.14
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BSA Audit Procedures

Most BSA Audits begin with a report from a disgruntled employee or former employee. The Business Software Alliance maintains telephone hotlines and a web site to encourage disgruntled employees and vendors to make anonymous reports against companies of all sizes. The BSA dedicates a substantial portion of its revenue marketing on radio stations and the…

201604.15
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Unbundling Software Suites in BSA | The Software Alliance Audits

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One of the most controversial tactics the BSA uses when calculating its settlement demands is its practice of unbundling software suites such as Microsoft Office and Adobe Creative Suite. Unbundling occurs when the target of a BSA audit is unable to provide acceptable proof of purchase for one or more installation of a software suite….

201602.01
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What You Need to Know if You Receive a Letter from BSA | The Software Alliance

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Preparing the BSA Audit Materials BSA | The Software Alliance’s primary enforcement tool is to send a threatening letter indicating that an investigation has commenced and offering to forego litigation if the target company provides a self-audit. A self-audit consists of a listing of all BSA member software running on a company’s computer networks, appropriate…

201601.15
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When to Buy vs.Uninstall Software in BSA | The Software Alliance Audits

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One of the most common mistakes I encounter in BSA audits is what I call the post-effective date software buying spree. The buying spree occurs in response to a letter from the BSA’s attorney’s requesting a self audit. Many clients are discouraged to learn that software purchases made after the date of the BSA’s initial…

201601.01
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When to Seek Help for a BSA | The Software Alliance Audit

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Many companies choose to pursue an internal audit of software systems after receiving a request from the Business Software Alliance (BSA). When it comes to deciding how to proceed with an audit, there are multiple considerations, including, but not limited to, the size of the company, amount of computers, type of software at issue, IT…